Summary and Info
The Education Service was a vital sector of the British Colonial Service while the British Council has been paramount in promoting the English language and culture overseas. But are both agents of colonialism and neo-colonialism? Or simply altruistic conveyors of language and culture to a wider world? Verner Bickley as an Education Officer in British Colonial Service in Singapore and as British Council officer in Burma, Indonesia and Japan, shows how cultural values were uppermost and important in themselves though the medium of the near-universal English language, and vital for technical training. Bickley's service was set against a backdrop of political turbulence after World War II, colonial independence movements and the emergence of Japan as an economic powerhouse. This personal account of his career is enlivened by a succession of meetings with diverse personalities, including royalty, British and Thai, as well as writers like Anthony Burgess, Graham Greene and Willis Hall and actors such as Donald Sinden, Patrick Stewart and Max Adrian.
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